Benga – Diary Of An Afro Warrior

The reluctant dark prince of finally comes out of the shadows with weight triple vinyl debut album, Diary Of An Afro Warrior

After the success of the Benga & Coki track, ‘Night‘ (The Worldwide Awards No. 1 track of 2007), it wasn’t going to be long before the album was ready. Benga is nothing but a busy lad as he’s now in worldwide demand as a DJ (check out below link to the Benga interview on the Peterson No. 9) and the much awaited Worldwide session with Nostalgia 77 is now apparently confirmed and booked in.
The big track is the super wobble of ’26 Baselines’ so head straight for the last disc; but don’t get too engrossed as on the flip there are two tracks that are not so obvious on the other side (don’t get caught out by the from 45 to 33⅓ rpm). ‘Twister’ is a slower paced and definitely has an echo of earlier Daedelus/Ammoncontact material; ‘Tech Wobbler’ even has some field recording!
Like earlier dubstep album’s we’ve featured (Bass Clef and label mate Skream), there’s a variety here that you might not expect like the strange cut-up d’n’b vs. psych-acid drop, ‘The Cut’ and the almost jazzy ‘Zero M2′. From tracks like these I guess Benga picked up a few studio tricks on his trip to last years’ Red Bull Music Academy session in Toronto.
That said, you’ll be looking out for big bangers so check out the 45 sided ‘Out Of Phaze’, ‘E Trips’ and the ‘techno’ grower, ‘Z’.
The vinyl release is aimed at DJs/vinyl junkies while the CD is more of a ‘collection’ with more tracks on it including ‘Night’ (Benga suggest you buy both vinyl and CD versions, but then he would).
Dubstep might be taking its time getting out of the Croydon basement (even with a leg up from Radio 1′s Mary Ann Hobbs, Benji ‘38 Baselines‘ B and Peterson) but Diary Of An Afro Warrior is the album for today. A historical record of Benga’s development so far but with the Benga vs. session, he’s definitely got the guts to challenge himself and the possibilities are daunting.
Reviewed: Benga — Diary Of An Afro Warrior (Tempa) Cat. No. TEMPALP 010 Release date: 10th March 2008
A E Trips (4:52)
B1 Out Of Phaze (4:41)
B2 The Cut (4:49)
C Zero M2 (4:16)
D1 Air (4:11)
D2 Z (5:10)
E 26 Basslines (5:06)
F1 Twister (6:04)
F2 Tech Wobbler (4:47)
Gilles Peterson :: 20 March 2008 :: Jamie Liddell at Maida Vale
Nostalgia 77 and Keith & Julie Tippett — ‘Untitled’ (Test)
Gilles Peterson Worldwide — Vol.01, No.19 — Gilles Peterson meets the ‘Afro-Warrior’, Benga
Duration 01:02:07 Published 06/02/2008
RWD About 2 Blow: Dubstep — Also check the recent Kode 9 remix for Dabrye

  • R. Trade

    Diary Of An Afro Warrior
    Number seven in Rough Trade’s albums of 2008. It comes with an exclusive bonus 30 minute mix cd by benga. Set to become the face of Dubstep in 2008, Benga unleashed one of last year’s biggest tracks in Night, the perfect precursor to this peerless debut.